Touching Bass: Mike Delinquent
Mike Delinquent’s bouncy basslines and breakbeat driven rhythms are reminiscent of the golden age of garage that engulfed clubs of yesteryear. With a resurgence fronted wholeheartedly by the likes of Disclosure and Royal T in recent years, there could be more vocal-driven gems to add to our archives. We caught up to discuss Club Warehouse, Aaliyah and the dilemma of vinyl in clubs.
Also, check out the Touching Bass mix series, which continues alongside all features via Mixcloud.
The garage movement is back in full swing again, but what do you think this has allowed a forward-thinking version to step in?
I think it’s been threatening to come back for a few years now, different producers have been battling with their sounds but taking garage influences without it being made the same ways as before. You’ve got people like Royal T and Disclosure to name but a few that have leant on garage influences and done their own thing. The idea of garage being back on radio has now been backed by garage raves with top promoters getting behind the sound again.
What was your first memorable experience of garage?
Apart from listening to pirate radio – which is an experience in itself – it would be Club Warehouse in north London. It was all a bit nuts, near this business park and DJ EZ was playing which was unbelievable because his mixing was amazing. At this point, I wasn’t making garage so it was all a bit like: ‘what is this?’ and this was all before the sound got pretty dark, with great vocals.
So what were you making music before you made garage?
I’ve been making music since I was really young, just playing keyboard and the guitar. When I did eventually get into a studio, I was listening to a lot of mid-Nineties R&B. I used to spend a lot of time at home just recreating the riffs from those tunes and my first musical experience was very DIY to be honest.
Do you ever miss that golden era of R&B that involved people like Timbaland, Brandy and Aaliyah?
Every day. I used to go into Wood Green market and try and find any type of R&B CD that was in HMV just to try and get it in advance. You used to get the stuff on radio with Tim Westwood and Trevor Nelson so I’d always be there trying to find new things because that period had so much creativity and the music itself was so wholesome.
So onto your new track with KCAT and Mikill Pane. I’m aware that you’ve worked with KCAT previously but how did you end up in the studio with Mikill?
That was originally a solo record and it was one of those tracks that had been sitting there for a while. One day, I came into the studio and I just felt that it could translate into a really garage, breakbeat track and I felt that it needed a rapper towards the end. It needed to be an MC that was known for having that fun element and so Mikill was brought to my attention and we got in touch. It worked really well.
When you play out live, do you still manage to slip vinyls in there at all?
Not as much as before, no. I’ve found that it’s more to do with the clubs that don’t keep the vinyl decks in as good a condition as they should do. There have been times where I’ve been DJing and the needles will start jumping on certain records and it’s not even the records themselves.
Is there anywhere around the world that you would love to play?
America seems like a place that could embrace the garage sound. Also, I’ve only played in Ibiza once so I’d love to play somewhere similar again.
Mike Delinquent’s latest single Mama Said features KCAT and Mikill Pane and is released on February 3 via Champion Records. You can listen to the last mix from Youngstar on the Touching Bass Mixcloud page.
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